Notts County will need to produce something special in the remaining nine games if they are to stay in Sky Bet League 1, says manager Shaun Derry.
Notts came away from a six-pointer with fellow strugglers Tranmere Rovers empty handed on after a closely fought encounter at Prenton Park.
Ronan Murray gave the Magpies hope of a win with a first half opener but goals from Jason Koumas and Ryan Lowe put the hosts ahead.
Alan Sheehan pulled County level after the interval with an outstanding free-kick, only for Rovers to snatch all three points late on via a stunning Steve Jennings winner.
Notts now head into the final games seven points adrift of safety but the manager is not giving up hope of a Great Escape.
“I’ve got to say that it’s going to be some turnaround to actually enable us to get to where we want at the end of the season,” said Derry.
“I’m absolutely devastated by that because I thought they were absolutely magnificent from start to finish.
“I’ve got to give credit where credit’s due, because many times I’ve openly criticised the lads and individual errors.
“Again, you can look back on individual errors for goals but I’ve got to say, bar the five or 10 minutes after we scored where I thought we shot ourselves in the foot and their one strike, which was an absolute worldie from Jennings, there was only one team in it.
“That was us and that’s absolutely heartbreaking for us.
“I’m with them every step of the way because I’ve criticised them deeply the last few weeks when I’ve felt let down and that they’ve let the club down.
“I can’t say they’ve let the club down on Saturday, I really can’t.”
He added: “I tell you what, until that fat lady sings we’ll be giving it a right go - an absolute right go - and it’s the only way.
“They’re all six pointers between now and the end of the season - every game is huge.
“I felt that at Tranmere all game they kept going and we’ve got to do that again on Saturday because it’s going to be an almighty battle at Meadow Lane.”
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